I awoke on the diagonal, rather than in the me-shaped spot on the edge. Arms thrown wide like I was waiting to hug something.

Some days I think I’ll just stay there. Miss Havisham in her pajamas, bits of her strong, old heart scattered on the duvet. But I don't. Of course I don't. Off course I. Don't.

“I love you” no longer hangs in the air here, like a dust mote suspended in a sun beam suddenly sparkling and dancing in the light.

But I do the best I can-

“Sometimes you’re alright, Christman,”

At least it’s out loud. At least it’s not a ghost.

Like the house, it is tidy. With an air of expectation, as if dinner guests will arrive any minute. Everything is in place. I am not folded in on myself like a towel or a shirt. I am not sucked up in the vacuum’s roar.

Victory is won not in miles, but in inches.